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I Am America (And So Can You!) Paperback – October 20, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. As this audiobook opens with patriotic drums rolling, Colbert launches into his introduction, his delivery reminiscent of a sergeant firing up the troops before battle. America is under siege, he declares. And the enemy? The liberal media, Hollywood, heirloom tomatoes and, yes, even baby carrots, which he says are trying to turn me gay. That's the Truth as Colbert sees it, and this audio, as well-produced as an episode of The Colbert Report, is the perfect vehicle for his off-the-cuff (and off-the-wall) humor. A mariachi band plays as Colbert advocates building a 2,000-mile-long wall between the U.S. and Mexico, and spooky music underscores his future opinions (Just because something is unknowable doesn't mean I don't have some strong opinions about it). Periodically, other readers chime in for the Stephen Speaks for Me segments, expertly embodying such characters as God, an old spinster and an overzealous football fan. Those who can't get enough of the Report will savor this savvy satire, including the packaging—which bears a hilarious illustration of Colbert as the Hulk.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
The funnyman host of Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report rants about things that are wrong with America, offering his “knee jerk beliefs” on everything from the liberal media to environmentalists. If we continue to secularize Christmas, he screeches, former carolers will become wandering, alcoholic bums, and insects will grow into giant, munching minivans. He advocates legalizing performance-enhancing drugs for athletes, since sports are entertainment. Taking on a blowhard persona, he attacks atheists—how could a god exist who created a group that so pisses him off? Atheists are more hated than gays, to whom we at least entrust our hair. Interspersed with Colbert’s shrill tirades are the voices of other characters, notably the more modulated tones of God, who claims to be fair since he does not intercede in the outcome of sports on which he bets. Patriotic drums, a mariachi band, and other music accompanies this hilarious audio. Colbert fans will approve. --Whitney Scott --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
Top customer reviews
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Colbert's basic shtick is that he is a conservative nutjob. He does it so well that some conservatives really do believe he's on their side. Of course, it's all satire; he's actually a progressive in very thin disguise.
Another important part of his shtick is that he's an egomaniac. He manages to combine these two elements quite deftly. He portrays a white male Catholic (which apparently he really was as a little boy) who has incredibly confused concepts of reality, religion, politics, and just about everything else.
The format of the book is also interesting. It has certain recurring "advertising" items, a segment entitled "Stephen Speaks for Me: A chance for average Americans to agree with what I think." Each chapter starts with a prologue shaped into an American flag, with one word where the field of stars would be, and all caps red print making up the stripes on the white background. He IS America, you see! There are marginal notes and footnotes that are quite as funny as the main text. There are two pages of stickers, one of flags to use for marginal comments, and one of stickers to put on other books to grant them "The Stephen T. Colbert for the Literary Excellence." (Yes, that superfluous article is in there.) There are fake games and quizzes and puzzles, and generally plenty of opportunity to have fun in the mad, mad, mad Colbert Nation.
There are also some real insights, so beware if you thought it was all just for laughs. You may find yourself laughing at something which is really too true to be funny, the way zen masters hit you upside the head.
I love this book.
Anyhow, it's inexpensive and if you like his style and find yourself killing some time - it's ok. But it is by far not as polished as I had hoped it would be. It seems he sat down and wrote what came to his mind. I had hoped for a little more effort.